Building Sports Brands: Sportfolio (07/10)

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July 10 (Bloomberg) -- Some of the most influential figures in sports succeed by building and delivering unique and personal brands. Kobe Bryant, Gary Player, Joe Flacco and Arizona Diamondbacks CEO Derrick Hall are featured in this Sportfolio roundup. (Source: Bloomberg)

Sports business is not just about dollars and cents.

It is about personality and brands that connect.

It is about icons like kobe bryant who understands what it takes to dominate the global marketplace.

I would say a brand.

It is about legends , always giving golf everything he has got.

He gives sponsors more than they could possibly asked for.

It is about rising stars like joe flacco, a super bowl champion who is going about his business like a regular guy.

It is about leaders, a ceo who keeps his baseball organization humming, literally.

In the big business of sports, it is the personal touches that count.

Find out just how much on sportfolio.

I am rick horrow, welcome to sportfolio.

Over the past year, we have had the opportunity to meet some of the most important figures in sports and find out face to face how they do their jobs and build their brands.

It is instructive and it is a lot of fun.

This week, we put together four of our favorite profiles from the program, starting with a man who has become a one named brand, kobe.

Nike was about to release the latest version of his basketball shoe.

Stephanie gave us a window into an athlete at the top of his game and a business person with ambitions the on the game.

When i sat down with kobe bryant at the launch of his newest nike shoe, i learned how seriously he takes the sneaker business.

Nike is filled with ultracompetitive people.

We are all cut from the same cloth and we speak the same language.

Designers and engineers and so forth and so on who are as passionate about what they do.

We have that bond.

I learned how he feels about following magic johnson or michael jordan into nba ownership.

But i do not know if ownership is the right thing for me -- i do not know if ownership is the right thing for me.

At age 34, i tried to draw kobe out on the subject of his next career move.

How could you walk away from the game?

What you want to keep a sneaker" or i will be around the game -- sneaker in?

I will be around the game.

He will stay around the game, but as a brand, not necessarily as an executive.

He has had his share of headaches and responsibilities as captain of the lakers team that has struggled early this season.

When the team makes decisions like a new coach, is it tough for you to not be part of management?

Do you feel like you get to be part of that decision- making process?

It is always a little dicey.

You are in the locker room with them every day.

It is a little weird to feel like you are putting on a managerial hat.

It is a fine line.

Management does their job.

If they have any questions, they can call me.

I just give my opinions.

Looks kobe gave his opinion on phil jackson led the lakers coaching job became available, calling him "the greatest coach of all time." the team hired -- we have had a great relationship and we continue to have a great relationship.

He is more like my mentor.

He gave me plenty of books to read.

What kind of books?

Very strange ones.

He is into books that i have looked at the title and said, am i going to have anything in common?

It turns out to be something that is very good.

We have a great relationship.

I am disappointed that he is not part of the organization.

Should fans have confidence in the lakers management right now?

It is a process.

We have been through so many ups and downs.

Our record is not very good right now, but i believe it will change.

Studying like a manual has been studying zen.

Focusing on long-term results, much like another of his mentors.

A business visionary who he will someday join in the basketball hall of fame.

Do you think the nike shearman should be in the basketball -- nike chairman should be in the basketball hall of fame?

For sure.

Growing up, i watched all of the jordan commercials.

Charles barkley commercials.

As a kid, i did not differentiate between the nike commercial and the nba commercial.

I did not understand there was a difference.

What he did for the game of basketball was elevated globally for a kid growing up in italy and not really watching basketball, he elevated the game.

Bryant has teamed with nike to expand the nba footprint even further.

China is the second biggest market as far as basketball.

You were one of the first to truly embrace china.

It was more of a strategic call.

At the time, we were going through some controversy and we had to make a decision how we would attack things from a brand perspective.

I had been to china for so many years.

We heard the chatter of it about being an emerging market.

I had so many relations -- relationships there.

We kind of wanted to flip the paradigm.

Hopefully, we do a good enough job.

After kobe bryant has made his last jump shot, i suspect he will jump into a new role.

He will not be just a global brand ambassador.

With his credentials, or he could be basketball secretary of state.

You have been a leader in the globalization of basketball.

David stern has given you credit for it.

Should it go global?

I think the game is such a beautiful game.

I love it so much.

If you had to call yourself a businessman, a basketball player, or a brand, what would it be?

I would say a brand because you can wrap them all into that.

I have been very fortunate to be surrounded with great people who help me come up with great products, help me make right decisions.

This season did not end well for kobe bryant.

He tore his achilles late in the year and the lakers were knocked out of the playoffs early.

Do not bet against a full comeback for kobe bryant and his team.

Coming up, gary player made his mark as a masters champion.

He chose the same joy and character that served him so well on the course.

Sportfolio is coming right back.

? clouds sponsorship at the masters golf tournament is almost as exclusive as membership and augustine national.

The masters has only three official global sponsors.

Companies can associate with the event by coming to the tournament with golfers.

If you attend as a corporate guest of gary player, you get the experience of a lifetime.

For gary player, augustus has been the scene of some legendary golf and the site of some legendary is this meetings.

One of the greatest stories, standing under the oak tree.

I really want to get the big three together.

I think we could have gary player, arnold palmer, and jack nicholson -- john nicholas.

The masters has been a great part of that.

Our ability to come back every year and give these guys a little taste of what the gary player dna is all about.

He returns to augusta each april to play golf, see friends, and to strengthen one of the most successful international brands in sports.

We invite all of our sponsors from all over the world to join us.

We go to great expense to appreciate this.

We are able to put together a program that is consistent in the delivery of service, style, food.

It creates a wonderful background for us to entertain our past customers, current clients, and new business.

You give them an invite, they invariably come.

Sponsors, partners, and clients enjoyed an authentic south african barbecue come rubbed elbows with the guest of honor, and relaxed after dinner with some unique entertainment.

Having people like gary down here representing the product and meeting with our clients and partners and representing the brand is really important for us.

He has done this for 56 years and it does not get old.

How does that happen?

If i could figure that out, i would bottle it and sell it.

They are not the same way in how they get the result.

The roster of corporate partners include callaway and rolex.

It led to a new relationship in 20 with healthcare giant humana.

Gary represents everything we stand for.

Personal accountability, diet, exercise.

He represents that.

Would tickets to this year's masters selling for more than $10,000, the value of access to augusta national is clearly soaring.

The sponsor experience becomes legitimately priceless.

Being here with gary, it is very special.

It is the opportunity to bring people who want to bond with us and we keep it small and intimate.

Harry is very engaging, he makes them feel wanted.

-- gary is very engaging, he makes them feel wanted.

He understands the importance of no substitutes.

If you give love, you receive love.

My life is based on love, trying to contribute to society.

I have been in a position to give back and golf is a great catalyst at giving back.

He was one of the few golfers who spoke directly in favor of granting women membership at augusta national.

He was one of the first to welcome condoleezza rice to her first tournament.

He was instrumental in posting to open the masters field to african-americans in the 1960s. when he talks about golf and giving, it is about far more than just corporate hospitality.

Quarterbacks to win super bowl's -- joe flacco is just fine staying close to home.

I want to do the easiest thing possible.

I feel like i am pretty shy.

? every nfl franchise would love to find a joe flacco.

Well grounded , talented, who can lead his team to a super bowl victory with minimal fuss and drama.

He has been in high demand from sponsors.

The quarterback and his agents are keeping things low key.

Good morning.

Just trying to follow-up with you.

He gives me about 72 hours of his time in the off-season.

This is about 48 hours.

It might be 60 things and he picks six of them.

Bucks i am joe flacco, super bowl m.v.p.. i am proud to be part of the winning team at al packer ford.

He does pretty well, but it is not what drives them.

There are some opportunities that have come up which she has been more open to.

-- which he has been more open to.

It was a whirlwind right after we won the game.

I got to enjoy it with my mom, my sister, my wife, my son.

Going to disney world, being on letterman, all really cool things.

Try to enjoy it as much as i could.

What you see with joe is what you get and i think that is exciting.

He has certain relationships and baltimore where international companies did come come along, he would probably say no just to keep the relationships he has.

I want to do the easiest thing possible.

It would be great if there was an offer where i could not say no to it.

In general, i feel like i am pretty shy.

I feel kind of awkward and most of the settings.

That would be my reason for being so selective.

Joe was not from baltimore, did not grow up in baltimore, but people view him, one of the sons of the community.

We try to piece things together.

He will do an opportunity after this that the dairy queen.

We were able to piece that together with a group we would like that money to go to.

These are the kinds of things you get a chance to impact the family and meet some people and feel something that you have done, you get a sense for what it is all about.

You are able to see that impact.

Thank you.

When you can relate to someone, it makes it a lot easier.

You work harder for the people you like.

You root harder for the people you can relate to.

The city of baltimore, they see what joe is.

He is someone easy to root for.

It should be noted that joe flacco signed a $120 million contract in march with an upfront bonus of 29 million.

He is not hurting for spending money.

Flacco has signed a pretty sweet endorsement contract as the spokesman for gummy bears.

Portfolio is not done.

We want to introduce you to a baseball ceo.

When people want to whistle while they work, that is how we go about it.

Baseball meets broadway when sportfolio returns.

We have met our share of charismatic ceos but very few leaders combine sports business savvy and show business personality like terra call of the arizona diamondbacks -- derek hall of the arizona diamondbacks.

? wiseman say ? what do they say?

? only miller will do ? when people want to whistle while they work, that is how we go about it.

We have such a long season.

It is a grind.

A lot of aren't foyers, maybe it is their first time on the job -- a lot of our employees, and they beat their first time on the job.

Ridiculous.

My name is derrick.

It is not like there is a business guy and a friend.

He is all the same person.

I had some theatrical experience as a kid.

Our production crew has a blast.

People draw -- dropped off all kinds of stuff in here.

Garden gnomes.

His approach to leadership is not just the same old song and dance.

I spent time with them in phoenix this spring and learned his message to the diamondbacks organization is carefully scripted.

We have every employee carry around a pocket version of our mission statement.

This is how we do business.

We recognize and reward people based on the circle of success.

We take those individuals and we go on a trip.

We go to california and we go to disneyland.

It is fun, but make sure you watch customer service unfriendliness.

There we go to -- service and friendliness.

And then we go to the tonight show and jimmy kimmel.

Everybody looks forward to that trip.

My other big philosophy, the customer does not come first.

To me, the employee comes first.

If we treat the employee well and we are and suspect -- we employees, the employee will treat our customers.

He has the intelligence and he really knows how to touch the heart strings.

This is more than a business.

There is no i in team.

How good of a singer?

I think he would dominate broadway.

I would give him tens across the board.

He is athletic, and he has the looks.

He is a guy who can do it all.

If i had to choose a song from the lion king, it would probably be "the circle of life." we have our circle of success.

They have the circle of life.

They spell is life.

You are not a part of baseball, baseball is a part of you.

That will do it for this edition of sportfolio.

Our thanks to kobe bryant, player, joe flacco and derek call for spending time with us.

Thank you for watching.

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